Thursday, December 18, 2008

Politics of reconciliation is not
reconciliation for politics

Billy Graham, President Nixon, President Obama, Reverend Warren: the temptations of evangelism.

How come people who call themselves "evangelical" are so often deprived of the most elementary compassion? They seem to lack the qualities that make a good Christian: Jesus was open minded, isn't it? I understand that it is the Dalai Lama who said "My religion is very simple. My religion is kindness", but it does not sound foreign to me.
I am all stressed out that after giving us a government of brilliant minds, our president-elect Obama picks up a preacher who is mean spirited and does not understand evolution (see the blog of Thoughts from Kansas and the comments.
Don't we have a good evangelist in this country? I have seen a few on TV that looked perfectly respectable. It is not the case of Rev. Rick Warren, no more than was the pastor Jeremiah Wright, even taking into account his oratory style: jealous and mean. I am mad at them, and I am not even gay.

But you never know how respectable exemplary people are. Many many years ago, there was in Belgium a big evangelical crowd to listen to Billy Graham. The set was a bit theatrical: some church members that I knew (people from my own church) had volunteered to get "converted" suddenly at the end of the preaching, in order to encourage the shy agnostics in the crowd to do the same. It is a small thing, it is not a sin or a crime, but I was not surprised, years later, to see that the same Billy Graham had advised President Nixon so well.

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